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Zimbabwe to fine businesses not using official new exchange rate By Reuters


HARARE (Reuters) – Zimbabwe will impose fines on companies that use inflated exchange rates as the government struggles to preserve the value of its new gold-backed currency, Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG).

Any company using an exchange rate higher than the official rate of 13.5 zig per U.S. dollar would be liable for a fine of 200,000 zig ($14,815), according to a government notice seen by Reuters.

Anyone offering “goods or services at an exchange rate higher than the prevailing interbank foreign exchange rate” will be guilty of civil violation, the notice issued late Thursday said.

The government has been making efforts to keep ZiG afloat since its launch in early April, with authorities cracking down on illegal forex traders last month.

Some businesses, such as supermarkets, charge a premium above the market rate for customers who pay in the new currency, while ZiG is rejected by informal traders.

Zimbabwe's Treasury moved on Tuesday to enforce the use of ZiG as the official unit of exchange for transactions.

This is Zimbabwe's fourth attempt to obtain a local currency in a decade, as the southern African country abandoned the zim dollar last month after it lost 70% of its value since the beginning of the year.

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